Following in Lincoln’s Footsteps: My presentation to the ALP Convention (video)

April 22nd, 2015

Participants at the 2015 ALP Convention in Vandalia

 

Last Saturday, I made a presentation to the Association of Lincoln Presenters Convention  entitled, “How Abraham Lincoln Used Stories to Touch Hearts, Minds, and Funny Bones,” based on my book.

The presentation took place in the Old Vandalia Statehouse (Vandalia, Illinois) in the chambers where Lincoln actually served as a state representative. I thought I could feel Lincoln’s spirit in that venerable place.

At the age of 28, while serving in the Illinois General Assembly, Lincoln made one of his first public declarations against slavery, in the Vandalia Statehouse. Lincoln stated,The institution of slavery is founded on both injustice and bad policy”

One historian called it “The first formal declaration against the system of slavery that was made in any legislative body in the United States, at least west of the Hudson River.”

My Presentation

Here are a few highlights from my presentation to the Lincolns:

Cemetery Walk Tours

One memorable convention activity was cemetery walk tour in the Old Vandalia Cemetery. It involved actors portraying the roles of the people buried in the cemetery. It really touched my heart to hear such a vivid presentation of how their lives were changed by the civil war, and the various joys and tragedies they encountered in life.

Vandalia Cemetery Walk Tour

 

Abe’s favorite book! (aka John Mansfield)

 Other Lincoln Articles:

Follow Abe Lincoln’s Storytelling Example

Lincoln and Storytelling – Morning Blend Interview (video)

Abe Lincoln Storyteller Radio Interview with Rich Peterson

How Abraham Lincoln Used Stories to Connect with People

How Abraham Lincoln Used Stories to Win the Presidential Nomination (a lesson for the 2016 Candidates for President)

Abraham Lincoln and Storytelling – The Story Behind the Book

What Mr. Lincoln Taught Me About the Power of Stories

7 Book Promotion Tips by Radio Host Bob Schmidt

Abe Lincoln Storyteller Radio Interview with Rich Peterson

Lincoln Storytelling at AZ Senior Academy and Aztec Toastmasters (Video)

Follow Abe Lincoln’s Storytelling Example

April 11th, 2015

Always bear in mind that your own resolution to succeed is more important than any one thing.

– Abraham Lincoln

Vandalia Statehouse where Lilncoln served as a state representative

Abraham Lincoln may no longer walk this Earth, but his message continues to beckon us.

Through the example of his life, Abraham Lincoln shares a truth with us that, like the Rock of Gibraltar, is immovable and unalterable. He is entrusting us with his version of the Philosopher’s Stone, but instead of converting any metal to gold, it has the power to transform strangers into friends. Lincoln proved the value of stories in his liberal use of them to achieve his extravagantly lofty goals.

If we follow the path blazed by Lincoln, we too can navigate through life, our stories

preceding us, obstacles dropping like chain-sawed trees before us.

In our persistently fast paced and burdensome lives, it’s easy to feel a little discombobulated. We can reorient our inner compass needle to true north by relying on stories to see us through. You may not share Lincoln’s burning desire to be President, but whatever your goals may be, stories are sure tools in achieving them.

 Prepare yourself to tell stories

 Yyou can begin now:

Rock of Gibralter

1.  Compile a “storytelling” notebook

2. Memorize and practice stories

3. Adapt and personalize your stories

4. Add a moral, or a humorous ending, to your stories

5. Use self-deprecating humor

Today is the day

Stories were Lincoln’s road to greatness and they can be ours too. To be successful, we don’t need magic beans or Ninja tricks, we just need stories. Any occasion that we can imagine is an appropriate time to share a story with someone.

Lincoln said,

“I will prepare and someday my chance will come.”

Today is your day. Your chance has arrived.

Upcoming Presentation – Join me in Vandalia

Saturday, April 18th I will be a guest speaker to the at The Association of Lincoln Presenters 2015 Convention, Vandalia, Illinois. The title of my speech is “How Abraham Lincoln Used Stories to Touch Hearts, Minds and Funny Bones.”

Location: The Old Vandalia Statehouse, 315 W. Gallatin Vandalia, Illinois 62471

Time: 9:30 am to 11:00 am

Historical note: The Vandalia State House, built in 1836, is the fourth capitol building of the U.S. state of Illinois. It is also the oldest capitol building in Illinois to survive, as the first, second, and third capitol buildings have all disappeared. The brickFederal style state house has been operated by the state of Illinois as a monument of Illinois pioneer years since 1933.

The Association of Lincoln Presenters
Related Posts:

Lincoln and Storytelling – Morning Blend Interview (video)

Abe Lincoln Storyteller Radio Interview with Rich Peterson

How Abraham Lincoln Used Stories to Connect with People

How Abraham Lincoln Used Stories to Win the Presidential Nomination (a lesson for the 2016 Candidates for President)

Abraham Lincoln and Storytelling – The Story Behind the Book

What Mr. Lincoln Taught Me About the Power of Stories

7 Book Promotion Tips by Radio Host Bob Schmidt

Abe Lincoln Storyteller Radio Interview with Rich Peterson

Lincoln Storytelling at AZ Senior Academy and Aztec Toastmasters (Video)

Following in Lincoln’s Footsteps: My presentation to the ALP Convention (video)

 

Remove that Garbarge Disposal Now!

April 1st, 2015

 

To owners/managers of rental properties, gargbage disposals are like a hanging fingernail – they are painful to have around and the sooner they are gone the better..

What do I have against gargabe disposals?

1) they just hang below the sink waiting to break down

2) they can smell like a sewer, and

3) they are a hazard to tenants!

There is almost no upside to having garbage disposals. If tenants have leftover food,  they just throw it into the trash can.

Having just replaced garbage disposals in two of my rental houses, I can say that there is one good thing that I like about garbage disposals. They are easy to remove.

Removing the Disposal

1. Use the GD remover tool to release the garbage disposal. Remove tubing first. The GD will fall to the ground. Be ready to catch.

2. The one tricky part is that to remove the basket fron the sink opening (that was formerly connected to the GD), there is a retainer ring below  the sink that must be pried off with a screwdriver.

 

Once the garbage disposal is out, replace it with the appropriate pipes.These days,the tubing just connects togther. No need for glue.  It’s as easy as putting tinger toys together. Piece of cake.

If you need, help ask the experts at Ace Hardware. That’s what I did.

 

Upcoming Presentations:

April 18, 2015. Forum Speaker at The Association of Lincoln Presenters 2015 Convention, Vandalia, Illinois.

The Association of Lincoln Presenters

 

Lincoln Storytelling at AZ Senior Academy and Aztec Toastmasters (Video)

February 11th, 2015

Last week I made two presentations.

First was a power point presentation to the distinguished residents of the Arizona Senior Academy on “How Abraham Lincoln Told Stories to Touch Hearts, Minds and Funny Bones.” The audience was one of the most Lincoln-informed that I have had the pleasure to present to. During he question and answer period following my presentation, I was asked extremely insightful questions about Lincoln. I was having so much fun interacting with the audience, several of whom were authors themselves, that I hated to leave.

Arizona Senior Academy

My second presentation was to the Aztec Toastmasters Club on the topic of “How Abraham Lincoln Used Stories to Overcome Trials and Tribulations.” Below is a clip from that presentation, on how Lincoln used stories to soften the blow of saying “no”.

 

Upcoming Presentations:

April 18, 2015. Forum Speaker at The Association of Lincoln Presenters 2015 Convention, Vandalia, Illinois.

The Association of Lincoln Presenters

 

Related Posts:

Lincoln and Storytelling – Morning Blend Interview (video)

Abe Lincoln Storyteller Radio Interview with Rich Peterson

How Abraham Lincoln Used Stories to Connect with People

How Abraham Lincoln Used Stories to Win the Presidential Nomination (a lesson for the 2016 Candidates for President)

Abraham Lincoln and Storytelling – The Story Behind the Book

What Mr. Lincoln Taught Me About the Power of Stories

7 Book Promotion Tips by Radio Host Bob Schmidt

Abe Lincoln Storyteller Radio Interview with Rich Peterson

Feb. 4: “Abraham Lincoln and the Power of a Story” at AZ Senior Academy

 Follow Abe Lincoln’s Storytelling Example

Following in Lincoln’s Footsteps: My presentation to the ALP Convention (video)

Feb. 4: “Abraham Lincoln and the Power of a Story” at AZ Senior Academy

January 31st, 2015

 

Abraham Lincoln said, “Stories are the shortest distance between a stranger and a friend.” Lincoln understood the power of a story.  It was a tool that allowed him to quickly and dramatically connect with people.

I will share the techniques Lincoln used to tell a story in my presentation on Wednesday (Feb. 4) at 3:30 p.m. at the Arizona Senior Academy.

Based on my newest book, “How Abraham Lincoln Used Stories to Touch Hearts, Minds, and Funny Bones,” I will illustrate Lincoln’s methods of mimicry, self-effacing humor, and adding a moral or surprise twist to a story.

I will also discuss the following five examples of why Lincoln told stories.

 1) To replace depression with an anecdote

Friends of Lincoln commented that he was able to snap himself out of a seemingly deep depression by telling a funny story.

Judge David Davis (of the Eighth Circuit Court in Illinois, the Court where Lincoln practiced law), said that after long days in court,

“If Lincoln was oppressed, the feeling was soon relieved by the narration of a story. The tavern loungers enjoyed it, and his melancholy, taking to itself wings, seemed to fly away.”

2) As safety-valve to relieve stress

Do you think that your life is stressful because you have a raving boss and a dysfunctional family life, while at the same time trying to find enough money to make ends meet?

Consider for a moment how stressful Lincoln’s life was. He was President during an unpopular war that he seemed to be losing; the majority of his Cabinet members thought that he was an ignoramus and they all could do a better job as President; and, a hysterical wife made his home life seem like A Nightmare on Elm Street. If Lincoln had been under any more pressure he would have turned into a diamond.

Given the situation that he found himself, it’s only natural that he needed some way to blow off steam and relieve the pressure. He did that though storytelling.

It was common for Lincoln to liven up a Cabinet meeting by telling a story or by reading some humorous quotes from his favorite authors Artemus Ward and Robert Newell (both genial newspaper critics who supported Lincoln’s policies.)  When nit-picky Cabinet members failed to appreciate the humor as he did, Lincoln reproached them by saying,

“Gentlemen, why don’t you laugh? With the fearful strain that is upon me night and day, if I did not laugh occasionally I should die, and you need this medicine as much as I do.”

3) To avoid making a commitment

 It seemed that nearly everyone (in addition to the aforementioned salted mixed-nuts in the President’s Cabinet) thought they could run the county better than Lincoln, and they were not shy about coming to the White House to tell him so.

Lincoln often used stories as a sort of insect repellant against the army ant horde of know-it-alls who came to his office with their harebrained schemes. Law partner, William Herndon, observed Lincoln’s methods as,

“. . .  Swinging around what he suspected was the vital point, but never nearing it, interlacing his answers with a seemingly endless supply of stories and jokes.”

Visitors would leave his office feeling they had persuaded the president to their way of thinking, but once having walked only a few blocks they realized they had been bamboozled by Lincoln’s tricky verbal manipulations, or as Herndon put it,

“[After] blowing away the froth of Lincoln’s humorous narratives, they would find nothing left.”

 4) To soften the blow of having to tell someone “no”

 Lincoln received many “favor seekers” to his office. Often they were upset because he had fired a relative who was in line to become a general, or because he backed a program that ran against their interest, or he failed to give a job to a “qualified” candidate.  Lincoln politely welcomed them all and immediately waylaid them with a story.  These visitors left his company without what they came for but with only with what they were given: a story with a message for them to think about.

One example of how Lincoln used stories to soften a refusal was when Senator John Creswell (a loyal Republican supporter of Lincoln) came to Lincoln to request the release of an old friend who had been captured and imprisoned.

Creswell admitted,

“I know the man has acted like a fool, but he is my friend, and a good fellow; let him out; give him to me, and I will be responsible that he will have nothing further to do with the rebels.”

Lincoln contemplated the request. It reminded him of a group of young people who went on a little country excursion. They crossed a shallow stream in a flatboat, but on their way back they found that the boat had disappeared. So each boy picked up a girl and carried her across, until the only ones remaining were a little short chap and a great “Gothic-built” old maid. Lincoln complained,

Jefferson Davis

“Now Creswell, you are trying to leave me in the same predicament. You fellows are all getting your friends out of this scrape; and you will succeed in carrying off one after another, until nobody but Jeff Davis [President of the Confederate States] and myself will be left, and then I won’t know what to do. How should I feel? How should I look, lugging him over?”

5) To point out flaws in logic

 Combined with his rapier wit, Lincoln’s proclivity for logic enabled him to point out the absurdity of an argument with a casual jest.

Supporters of an applicant for the position of Commissioner of the Hawaiian Islands tried to convince Lincoln that their man was both competent for the post but also in dire need it because the climate was good his health.

Lincoln responded:

“Gentlemen, there are eight other applicants for that position, and they are all sicker’n your man.”

 Upcoming Presentation:

Feb. 4, 2015, 3:30 to 4:30 pm (Mtn. time). Presentation to the Arizona Senior Academy. Tucson, Arizona.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Related Posts:

Lincoln and Storytelling – Morning Blend Interview (video)

Abe Lincoln Storyteller Radio Interview with Rich Peterson

How Abraham Lincoln Used Stories to Connect with People

How Abraham Lincoln Used Stories to Win the Presidential Nomination (a lesson for the 2016 Candidates for President)

Abraham Lincoln and Storytelling – The Story Behind the Book

What Mr. Lincoln Taught Me About the Power of Stories

7 Book Promotion Tips by Radio Host Bob Schmidt

Abe Lincoln Storyteller Radio Interview with Rich Peterson

Lincoln Storytelling at AZ Senior Academy and Aztec Toastmasters (Video)

Following in Lincoln’s Footsteps: My presentation to the ALP Convention (video)

Lincoln and Storytelling – Morning Blend Interview (video)

January 3rd, 2015

 

Alex and Tina attempt to put me In a double arm bar, unless I agree to tell one more Abe Lincoln story.
“Sorry Alex and Tina, you’ve reached your daily limit!”

Friday was my interview on the Morning Blend (KGUN 9 TV), with genial hosts Alex Steiniger and Tina Jennings, to discuss “How Abraham Lincoln Used Stories to Touch Hearts, Minds and Funny Bones.”

I had a chance to tell Lincoln’s “Pitchfork and Dog” story and one of my own stories, based on Lincoln’s storytelling techniques, “the Doctor and the Hot Mama.”

 

Here is the complete interview :

 

 _________

 

Upcoming Presentations or Interviews on “How Abraham Lincoln Used Stories to Touch Hearts, Minds, and Funny Bones”

Feb. 4, 2015, 3:30 to 4:30 pm (Mtn. time). Presentation “Abraham Lincoln and the Power of Story,” to the Arizona Senior Academy. Tucson, Arizona.

 

Related Posts:

Abe Lincoln Storyteller Radio Interview with Rich Peterson

How Abraham Lincoln Used Stories to Connect with People

How Abraham Lincoln Used Stories to Win the Presidential Nomination (a lesson for the 2016 Candidates for President)

Abraham Lincoln and Storytelling – The Story Behind the Book

What Mr. Lincoln Taught Me About the Power of Stories

7 Book Promotion Tips by Radio Host Bob Schmidt

Abe Lincoln Storyteller Radio Interview with Rich Peterson

Feb. 4: “Abraham Lincoln and the Power of a Story” at AZ Senior Academy

Lincoln Storytelling at AZ Senior Academy and Aztec Toastmasters (Video)

Follow Abe Lincoln’s Storytelling Example

Following in Lincoln’s Footsteps: My presentation to the ALP Convention (video)

Abraham Lincoln Storytelling Secret – Add Voices

December 13th, 2014

 Abraham Lincoln’s “Teeth Will Be Provided” Story

 The fiery Irish minister was preaching on the End Times – and in particular on the Day of Judgment. As he reached the climax of his address he said that on the Day of Judgment “You will all wail and gnash your teeth.”

At which point an old woman raised her hand and said, 

“Preacher, I ain’t got no teeth.”

The Minister replied, “Madam, on this great Judgment Day, teeth will be provided. “

Radio Interview

During my radio interview with Bob Schmidt (WLFN 1490 A.M.) on Friday, I discussed how Abraham Lincoln used body language, facial expressions, and voice mimicking to make a story effective.

 “Be the ball, Danny”

 In the movie Caddyshack, Chevy Chase earnestly instructed his young golf protégé,

 “Danny, there’s a force in the universe that makes things happen. And all you have to do is get in touch with it, stop thinking, let things happen, and be the ball.”

Likewise, one of Lincoln’s storytelling secrets was his ability “to be the story,” or, by putting himself so much into the story and into each character of the story, he and the story became one.

William Herndon

William Herndon, Lincoln’s law partner, said,

“Lincoln’s power of mimicry and his manner of recital were unique. His countenance and all his features seemed to take part in the performance.”

Do’s and don’ts of Lincoln storytelling     

Here are the “do’s” and “don’ts” in the Lincoln school of storytelling:

Do:

1) Give each character a personality: a voice, a stance, a way of moving.

2)Use words to vocalize an emotion, and use facial expressions to visualize the emotion.

3) Add interest to your voice by varying your rate of delivery, your volume, your pitch, your inflections, and your word emphasis.

Don’t:

1) Be overly melodramatic; keep expressions and gestures subtle.

2) Be afraid to have some fun.

For a great example of using body language and facial expressions to communicate, watch Charlie Chaplin in the boxing scene from his masterpiece “City Lights.”

Learn to mimic voices

Much of Lincoln’s success as a story teller was due to a talent for mimicry. Author T. G. Onstot said,

“In the role of story-teller, I never knew his equal. His power of mimicry was very great. He could perfectly mimic any accent.”

In my case, I use voices of famous actors as voices for the characters in my stories. Some of the voices I use are John Wayne (for any cowboy-type, or tough-guy character), Henry Fonda (for Abraham Lincoln, or “good guy” characters), Jack Nicholson (for bad or slimy guys), a teenager whose voice is breaking (for teenagers or scattered brained characters), Eeyore, from Winnie the Pooh, or Goofy, (for a slow thinker or a frightened person).

Here are some tips on how to mimic voices:

1) Watch videos on YouTube of the person you want to imitate;

2) Practice saying the same words that they say;

3) Practice at least four times a day;

4) Make a video of yourself doing impressions;

5) Anytime you read a book to children, practice using different voices for each character when you read a book to the class.

In developing a “minister voice,” a voice that Lincoln would have used in the “Teeth Will Be Provided” story, I watched

Reverend Lovejoy

videos of Reverend Lovejoy from The Simpsons. Some keys to learning the minister voice were to speak slowly, to deepen my voice at the end of a sentence, to stretch out the last word of each sentence, and to incorporate a slight southern twang.

Don’t worry if your impersonations are not perfect. Mine never are. Impersonations just need to be good enough to allow the audience to identify the characters.

 

———————————————————————————————

 FREE on Kindle only December 25!

“How Abraham Lincoln Used Stories to Touch Hearts, Minds, and Funny Bones.” Download

Reviews are appreciated!

———————————————————————————————-

Upcoming Interviews on “How Abraham Lincoln Used Stories to Touch Hearts, Minds, and Funny Bones”

Dec 17, 6:10 am (Mtn. time). Interview with the dynamic Dan Ramey, WBEX Radio 1490 AM, Chillicothe, Ohio. Web broadcast on http://www.wbex.com/onair/dan-mike-in-the-morning-3786/.

Dec. 30, 6:08 am (Mtn. time). Interview with the genial and witty Jeff Anderson, KSDR AM, Watertown, SD.

Jan. 2, 11:00 -noon (Mtn. time). Interview on the Morning Blend with hosts Tina Jennings and Maria Parmigiani, KGUN9-TV, Tucson, AZ.

Feb. 4 ,2015, 3:30 to 4:30 pm (Mtn. time). Presentation to the Arizona Senior Academy. Tucson, Arizona.

Podcasts of Previous Interviews

Dec. 11, 2014. Interview with the redoubtable Rich Peterson, KROC Radio 1340 AM, Rochester, Minnesota. Podcast.

Related Posts:

Abe Lincoln Storyteller Radio Interview with Rich Peterson

How Abraham Lincoln Used Stories to Connect with People

How Abraham Lincoln Used Stories to Win the Presidential Nomination (a lesson for the 2016 Candidates for President)

Abraham Lincoln and Storytelling – The Story Behind the Book

What Mr. Lincoln Taught Me About the Power of Stories

7 Book Promotion Tips by Radio Host Bob Schmidt

Abe Lincoln Storyteller Radio Interview with Rich Peterson

 Lincoln and Storytelling – Morning Blend Interview

Feb. 4: “Abraham Lincoln and the Power of a Story” at AZ Senior Academy

Lincoln Storytelling at AZ Senior Academy and Aztec Toastmasters (Video)

Follow Abe Lincoln’s Storytelling Example

Following in Lincoln’s Footsteps: My presentation to the ALP Convention (video)

Abe Lincoln Storyteller Radio Interview with Rich Peterson

December 11th, 2014

Rich Peterson

During the congenial radio interview with (the redoubtable) Rich Peterson of KROC 1340 AM in Rochester, Minnesota, we touched on:

1) How to find good stories to tell, and;

2) What are the characteristics that comprise a good story?

My response (with some bells and whistles added after the fact) went like this:

Finding and preserving stories

 Stories can be found everywhere – books television, movies, church. Some of the best stories are the ones we hear from friends, or overhearing from other conversations throughout the course of our day. The stories are out there like apples on a tree, ready to be picked. The key is to remember them.

In my case, when I hear a story that I want to remember, I immediately write it down. If I’m in my house, I write it in a notebook or in my desk calendar. I also carry re-cycled envelopes in my pocket to jot down story ideas, when I’m outside the house. They are especially useful when I am taking the dog for a walk, or going to church. When I return home, I transfer the story to my notebook or calendar.

The next step is to “Lincolnize” the story, or transform the story so that it is no longer just “a story” but it becomes “your” story.

The Lincoln Storytelling Template

 Use this template to frame your story in the same electric style that Lincoln used to tell his stories. Follow Lincoln to reap the harvest of a typical Lincoln story and:

1.  Connect with your listener.

2.  Generate laughter.

3.  Enlighten your listener.

 Step One – Opening sentence

Segue from topic being discussed to the story:

“That reminds me of a when I  . . .” or,

“Let me illustrate that point . . .” or,

“Speaking of . . . one time I when I was  . . .  .”

 Personalize the story. Never start a story by saying “A man walked into a bar.” Instead say, “I walked into a bar,” or, “My friend, Frank, walked into a bar.” Just jump into the story without prefacing it with “Here’s a funny story” or “I heard a story the other day.”

Step Two – Tell your story with pizzazz

 Tell a story to illustrate your point:

 “When I tried to make telephone calls to the U.S. I had to wait a long time . . .  .” (From a Peace Corps story I tell).

 Become one with the story. Give each character a personality.

Step Three – Thought provoking conclusion

Wrap up with a moral or humorous twist:

“If you don’t shake every hand, you can’t talk to Aunt Fran.” (From the Peace Corps story).

Place this succinct message of the story into your final sentence.

He is a link to the Rich Peterson – Abe Lincoln Storyteller interview.

———————————————————————————————

 FREE on Kindle only December 25!

“How Abraham Lincoln Used Stories to Touch Hearts, Minds, and Funny Bones.” Download

Reviews are appreciated!

———————————————————————————————-

Upcoming Presentations or Interviews on “How Abraham Lincoln Used Stories to Touch Hearts, Minds, and Funny Bones”

Dec 12, 2014, 6:15 am (Mtn. time) the indomitable Bob Schmidt, WLFN 1490 AM, Onalaska, Wisconsin. Listen in at http://www.1490wlfn.com/bs_with_bob_schmidt.html.

Dec 17, 6:10 am (Mn. time). Interview with the dynamic Dan Ramey, WBEX Radio 1490 AM, Chillicothe, Ohio. Web broadcast on http://www.wbex.com/onair/dan-mike-in-the-morning-3786/.

Jan. 2, 11:00 -noon (Mtn. time). Interview on the Morning Blend with hosts Tina Jennings and Maria Parmigiani, KGUN9-TV, Tucson, AZ.

Feb. 4, 2015, 3:30 to 4:30 pm (Mtn. time). Presentation to the Arizona Senior Academy. Tucson, Arizona.

Related Posts

How Abraham Lincoln Used Stories to Connect with People

How Abraham Lincoln Used Stories to Win the Presidential Nomination (a lesson for the 2016 Candidates for President)

Abraham Lincoln and Storytelling – The Story Behind the Book

What Mr. Lincoln Taught Me About the Power of Stories

7 Book Promotion Tips by Radio Host Bob Schmidt

Abraham Lincoln Storytelling Secret – Add Voices

Lincoln and Storytelling – Morning Blend Interview

Feb. 4: “Abraham Lincoln and the Power of a Story” at AZ Senior Academy

Lincoln Storytelling at AZ Senior Academy and Aztec Toastmasters (Video)

Follow Abe Lincoln’s Storytelling Example

Following in Lincoln’s Footsteps: My presentation to the ALP Convention (video)

How Abraham Lincoln Used Stories to Connect with People

November 28th, 2014

  Abraham Lincoln said, “Stories are the shortest path between strangers and friends.”

Lincoln’s version of a Facebook page was his one-on-one and face-to-face telling of stories to everyone he met. Stories allowed him to connect with people and win their respect in the shortest possible time. Not a bad skill for a politician to have.

Everyone who walked into Lincoln’s law office was told a story before they left. John H. Littlefield observed,

“No matter how busy Lincoln might be, whenever anyone came in he would inevitably greet him with a pleasant or funny comment, and before he left would always tell a joke or anecdote. Often he told the same story four or five times in the course of a day (to different visitors), and every time laughed as heartily as anyone.”

Toastmaster Conference Presentation Update

My seminar at the District 13 Toastmaster Conference, “How Abraham Lincoln Used Stories to Touch Hearts, Minds, and Funny Bones (and how you can too),” went extremely well. I may have made my presentation with my heart on my sleeve and spaghetti sauce on my tie, but I received very positive feedback afterwards. Books sold like hot cakes.

 

 Upcoming Presentations or Interviews on “How Abraham Lincoln Used Stories to Touch Hearts, Minds, and Funny Bones”

Dec. 11, 7:15 am (Mountain time). Interview with the redoubtable Rich Peterson, KROC Radio 1340 AM, Rochester, Minnesota. Web broadcast on http://krocam.com/author/richp/.

Dec 12, 2014, 6:15 am (Mttn. time) the indomitable Bob Schmidt, WLFN 1490 AM, Onalaska, Wisconsin. Listen in at http://www.1490wlfn.com/bs_with_bob_schmidt.html.

Dec 17, 6:10 am (Mtn. time). Interview with the dynamic Dan Ramey, WBEX Radio 1490 AM, Chillicothe, Ohio. Web broadcast on http://www.wbex.com/onair/dan-mike-in-the-morning-3786/.

Dec. 30, 6:08 am (Mtn. time). Interview with the genial and witty Jeff Anderson, KSDR AM, Watertown, SD.

Rich Peterson

Bob Schmidt

Dan Ramey

Jeff Anderson

Related Posts

Abraham Lincoln Storytelling Secret – Add Voices

How Abraham Lincoln Used Stories to Win the Presidential Nomination (a lesson for the 2016 Candidates for President)

Abraham Lincoln and Storytelling – The Story Behind the Book

What Mr. Lincoln Taught Me About the Power of Stories

Abe Lincoln Storyteller Radio Interview with Rich Peterson

Lincoln and Storytelling – Morning Blend Interview

Feb. 4: “Abraham Lincoln and the Power of a Story” at AZ Senior Academy

Lincoln Storytelling at AZ Senior Academy and Aztec Toastmasters (Video)

Follow Abe Lincoln’s Storytelling Example

Following in Lincoln’s Footsteps: My presentation to the ALP Convention (video)

How Abraham Lincoln Used Stories to Win the Presidential Nomination (a lesson for the 2016 Candidates for President)

October 29th, 2014

In order to win a man to your cause, you must first reach his heart, the great high road to his reason.

– Abraham Lincoln

 

In a lesson that aspiring candidate for the 2016 election, such as Hilary Clinton, Joe Biden, Chris Christie, and Jeb Bush, could learn from, Abraham Lincoln captured the Republican Nomination for the Presidency in 1860 by not criticizing his opponents.

Of the four candidates running for the Republican nomination for the Presidency in 1860, Lincoln had the very least amount of experience. Compared to the other candidates, who were all political “heavy weights,” Lincoln was considered a political “light weight.”

A Stunning Upset

It’s like the scene in the movie Rocky, where a TV interview shows challenger Rocky Balboa pounding frozen cow carcasses like punching bags in preparation for the big fight. The Champion’s trainer is watching the TV and says,

“Hey, Champ, you should see this guy that you’re going to fight. It looks like he means business.”

The champ is on the phone busily lining up endorsements for the fight and absentmindedly replies,

“Yeah, I mean business too.”

But you could see in his demeanor that he didn’t really comprehend the approaching “tsunami-zilla” that Rocky represented, just as Lincoln’s opponents underestimated him.

Lincoln the Underdog

Wm Seward

On the surface, Lincoln’s rivals for the nomination had nothing to fear from him. Lincoln’s only political experience on the national level consisted of two failed senate races and a single term in Congress, which he had served twelve years earlier. Contrary to Lincoln, the other three candidates for the nomination were widely known and respected by most Americans.

William Henry Seward, the front runner for the nomination, had been a celebrated U.S. senator from New York for more than a decade and governor of his state for two terms before he went to Washington, D.C.

Salmon Chase

Ohio’s Salmon Chase, a lookalike of the monster (Peter Boyle) in Young Frankenstein, also had been both senator and governor, and had played a central role in the formation of the national Republican Party.

Edward Bates -”You lookin’ at me?”

Edward (evil eye) Bates was a widely respected elder statesman, a delegate to the convention that had framed the Missouri Compromise, and a former congressman whose opinions on national matters were still widely sought.

Yet somehow, Lincoln, a political unknown, surprised almost everyone, and through some form of political jujitsu, outmaneuvered his opponents and captured the nomination.

In retrospect, we can see an explanation of how Lincoln accomplished this astounding feat.

Lincoln’s Stories Neutralize the Opposition

Lincoln had a huge advantage in the crucial area of communication and storytelling. Lincoln had an easy-going personality and a style of not directly attacking the opinions of others. Rather, he used persuasion and stories to win them over, resulting in no delegates at the convention being strongly opposed to him. When the other candidates split the vote, the affable Lincoln was the runaway “second choice” of the nominating convention. Lincoln could have been the poster boy for Dale Carnegie’s book How to Win Friends and Influence People.

The Lesson

Lincoln’s proficiency in storytelling eclipsed the experience and credentials of the other candidates. He never had to resort to mud-slinging or smear campaigns. Instead, Lincoln used stories to gently show people who disagreed with his policies the logical reasoning behind his decisions.

He didn’t view his opponents as enemies. His response was to view their perspectives as being no different than his own,  if he were in their shoes. They just needed things explained in the proper terms for them to fully grasp and support Lincoln’s view.

Lincoln’s goal was never to knock down his enemies like a row of bowling pins. He aimed to convince them to fall down voluntarily. Stories were the way he reached their hearts and minds.

See Also:

Abraham Lincoln Storytelling Secret – Add Voices

Abraham Lincoln and Storytelling – The Story Behind the Book

 What Mr. Lincoln Taught Me about the Power of Stories

How Abraham Lincoln Used Stories to Connect with People

Abe Lincoln Storyteller Radio Interview with Rich Peterson

Lincoln and Storytelling – Morning Blend Interview

Feb. 4: “Abraham Lincoln and the Power of a Story” at AZ Senior Academy

Lincoln Storytelling at AZ Senior Academy and Aztec Toastmasters (Video)

Follow Abe Lincoln’s Storytelling Example

Following in Lincoln’s Footsteps: My presentation to the ALP Convention (video)

Upcoming Presentations

On November 15, I will be presenting a 40 minute seminar on “How Abraham Lincoln Used Stories to Touch Hearts, Minds, and Funny Bones,” at the DoubleTree Inn in Tucson, Arizona for the 2014 Statewide Toastmaster (District 3) Conference.